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Do the Republican and Democratic national conventions serve an important political function? Or are they fatuous exercises in scripted piety and platitude?

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Michael Berry from Manitou Springs is a commercial artist

Did you watch coverage of the Republican and Democratic conventions? Maybe an hour, total. I don't have a TV.

If you could appoint anyone as president, who would it be? I'm from New Jersey. I love Chris Christie. The guy calls it like it is, no holds barred. He's hard-nosed and doesn't kowtow.

Who'll win in November? From what I'm seeing and hearing, the eloquence of Obama's delivery is making the country lean toward a welfare entitlement state with larger government. Obama is coming across as the common man, whereas Romney is associated with the rich and tax breaks.

How important will the debates be? They'll decide it, but unfortunately it'll be a personality thing. Romney will come across as a little stiff and disconnected. Obama will seem sharper and more eloquent.

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Henry Carr from the Academy and Galley area is a dental laboratory technician

Did you tune into convention TV coverage? Just the president's speech. I don't take much interest in these things. I don't vote.

What did you think of the president's speech? It was pretty moving. He touched on important points.

Do you see any value in these conventions? It's how both parties reach out to the people.

Who'll win in November? Obama will get re-elected. He's doing a good job so far.

Who would you make president if you could? Me. I could do just as good a job as anybody else.

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Henry Medina from the southeast is a student finance planner

How much convention coverage did you watch? Only a little. I'm not keen on endless speeches. It gets overwhelming.

What were the respective highlights? For the Republicans, Clint Eastwood. For the Democrats, Clinton's powerful and invigorating speech.

Is there any value in these conventions? They've become endless political commercials.

Who, of anyone anywhere, do you wish could be president? I'd re-elect Clinton.

How crucial will the debates be in this election? They'll be very important as long as the questions are hard and force both candidates to truly lay out their agendas.

Who'll win in November? I think Romney will carry Colorado, but Obama will be re-elected by a very slight margin.

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